Christmas Holidays Bring Back Childhood Memories
I love this picture taken in front of the tree at my father’s store downtown during the Christmas Holidays. It’s a picture of a little girl who adored her daddy and who knew nothing about the abuses so many children suffer each and every day throughout the world.
I would stay a little girl who dreamed of Guardian Angels and who trusted everyone for three more years after Mom took this picture. Everywhere I went back then, people treated me well. In a very small rural community, everyone looked after everyone else back in those days.
I remember the bandstand that the community set up in front of the drug store during the Christmas Holidays. On Saturday night, everyone in town would go stand on the main street to listen to the band play. There were always drawings for Christmas turkeys and Santa came to hand out candy canes to every child in town.
It was magical to see the lights along Main Street during the Christmas Holidays. Sure, everyone had a tree inside their homes, but back then there were very few people who had lights outside.
Uncle Bill fashioned a star with lights on it and each Christmas, he managed to get that star up to the top of his radio antennae. You could see it for miles. I loved that star! Uncle Bill told me it was magic and I could make a wish on it. Those were the days when I still believed in wishes at Christmas.
The Magic of Our Children
There has never been anything to compare to the joy I felt as my children began to experience Christmas through the eyes of innocence. Grandma Pearl was the winner every holiday of the best kid’s present ever. I can’t compete with the sheer brilliance of the unique toys she always seemed to find through the salesmen who visited her restaurant with special deals each holiday season.
My favorite was a silver train engine that ran on batteries. It has a light in the front that lit up and it made legitimate chugging sounds, complete with a whistle. That amazing little train chugged all over our house that Christmas. When it ran into something, it backed up, turned 90 degrees and headed off again. TR loved that train more than anything!
I’ve always loved the Christmas Holidays, but once I had children, the holiday became so much bigger! These two little boys were and still are the light in my eyes, the joy in my heart, and the spring to my step.
Now that they are grown, the riches they bring to my heart only expand each year. I can’t imagine life without these two. They are everything any mother dreams of when she starts a family.
Christmas Holidays & Traditions
The tree is up and looks beautiful when the lights are low in the house these mild winter evenings in Wisconsin. There are several decorations that were on Mother’s tree when I was little. Please share what ornament you hang on your tree each year that you received when you were a kid. I’d love to hear what memento you’ve carried with you through the years.
Our Christmas village is so special. My youngest son, Bill, blessed me with one new addition to the Christmas village every year for ten years. I finally had to tell him I didn’t have the room for any more additions to the village. Each building has lights, and Bill painted each and every one of them. My favorite is the church. It reminds me of all the wonderful times we had at the small church just down the street from our house. From the pageants my mom directed during the holidays, to the years I finally became old enough to play the organ for church services, my memories come flooding back this time of year.
Each of us has a beautiful memory of the holiday season. For one local boy, it was the shiny silver dollar and orange in his Christmas stocking. When I was little, I felt sorry for him when we shared what we got for Christmas during “Show & Tell” time. When I told Mom that was all he received and he was still smiling, she explained to me that his gift was more precious to him than anything I received that year. You know what? I finally understand what she was trying to tell me.
Let’s Be Kids Again During the Christmas Holidays
I have every intention of making a snow angel this year. We just need to get some snow.
Regardless of the blockage in my arteries, I intend to sample every single Christmas goodie I run across this holiday season. No, I’m not going to go crazy and “pig-out” on things. (I hope I didn’t offend any pigs out there because one of you will be donating that new vein they plan to sew into my neck.) The thing is, I love to eat. So did Grandpa Burton and no one refused him a piece of chocolate meringue pie during the holidays after his first heart attack. There has to be some type of fine line between being utterly stupid and over-indulging and still finding joy in life. I refuse to deny myself those things that make me happy, but I will use moderation.
I hope to spend as much time as possible with friends and family. We love to entertain and be entertained. This year, facing the upcoming surgery, I feel it’s even more important to enjoy every single minute of this Christmas season.
I remember the look of concern on my surgeon’s face last October after the hip replacement. He tried to explain how I stopped breathing during the surgery. I didn’t want to hear it. Everything turned out okay. In spite of my body’s reaction to the sedatives, they got me back, end of story. Well, that bit of information I blocked out of my consciousness seems rather important now that I’m heading back for another major surgery. I’m going to have to find out what happened and channel that information to the cardiovascular surgeon.
Suddenly, I understand just how precarious life is for all of us.
So, I want to be a kid again. For one month, I want to believe in miracles. I want to laugh and enjoy every minute I have with family and friends. How could any of us not want that?
December 14th is Roast Chestnut Day
You’ll be able to roast your own chestnuts after watching this Christmas Holidays “how-to” video from youtube. Here’s another video you can watch if you want your chestnuts done over a fire: Organic chestnut farmer, Chris Foster demonstrates how to roast fresh chestnuts.
Grandpa Burton loved roasted chestnuts during the Christmas Holidays. Of course, he roasted the ones he ate during childhood on an open fire, not in the oven. But, for those of you who live in the city or in an apartment, the oven method above will probably work better than a campfire in the community front yard.
Don’t forget to use the comments to let me know what childhood Christmas ornament you remember and why.